Owing to sluggish sales, I feel I should plug my book. Here is the credo of fortune worship. The reader can recite it to see if it applies: "If I believe in good luck or bad luck, then I believe in magic. Moreover, if I believe that I only live once, then I must have my magic now or never. So that if the operation of magic is not obvious, then it must be subtle, how subtle depending on how badly I need to feel enchanted in order to get through the day." Sermon On The Flats: The Egalitarian Alternative To Fortune Worship (psst press). <end of commercial>
To be more musically specific about Lennie's critique of mainstream culture (Supersonic, On A Planet, Air Pocket, Celestia, Freedom, Parallel, Apellation, Abstraction, Palimpsest, all songs on the 1946-1947 Classics CD), there's the expression to be out of tune with the times, right? Now, correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't atonality being out of tune with the times on a regular basis? And when the atonal melodies are not just parodying or satirizing tonal melodies (the tonal melodies representing the status quo, right?) but take on a life of their own as in the above mentioned songs (and preeminently in Wally Cirillo's improvisation on the 5th Variation of John LaPorta's Theme And Variations (Fantasy FCD 24776-2), Wally being a former student of Lennie's, right?), not just protesting the cultural values embodied by tonality but feeling themselves to be attractive and worthy of emulation in their own right; and groping toward someplace new and strange and wonderful where the dislocation and alienation of which they sing become a badge of solidarity instead of estrangement, then doesn't what began as an instinctive gesture of protest become the anthem of art for art, when the atonal melodies finally arrive at the capital melody of all atonal melodies, in San Atonia, where, heaving and writhing like a pile of snakes, they rear up on their codas and, home at last, intone with artless simplicity the major chords of the Internationale?
In spite of BT and my manful attempts previously to distinguish art for art from protest, I fear they're indistinguishable. Therefore, the best I can do is prove that BT's heavy investment in art for art is quite as subjective as mine in protest art. But in order to do that, I need to learn BT's opinion of the human condition, the expression of which, he admits, made him persona non grata on a few websites, I hope not on his dad's.